No. 11

April 01, 2014

Rob Halford has confirmed that British heavy metal band JUDAS PRIEST have completed work on their brand new studio album, to be released later this year. More details yet to come. This will be Priest's first release in over six years, following their album Nostradamus in 2008. As the band attempts to recover from that release, which was poorly received by fans, Priest as well return without original guitarist K.K. Downing leaving question of change.

Loudwire caught up with Rob Halford on the red carpet of the 3rd Annual Ronnie James Dio Awards on March 17, 2014 at thr Avalon in Los Angeles while Halford was on hand to receive the Man on the Silver Mountain Award for helping to raise awareness of the Ronnie James Dio Stand Up and Shout Cancer Fund. In addition to talking about his late friend Ronnie James Dio and his rendition of the Rainbow’s ‘Man on the Silver Mountain’ for the new Dio tribute album ‘This Is Your Life,’ Halford dropped the news of the upcoming Priest album. “The Priest album is finished. It’s done. I just heard from the mastering sessions that guitarist Glenn Tipton is looking over it in England, it’s finished. It’s done. It’s coming out at some point. We’ve got some more information we’re about to drop but in the process of the magic of building up expectation and tension to the climax. It’s f—ing heavy” said Halford.

Speaking to Artisan News, Halford stated "The record is finished; it's absolutely finished as of today." He added: "It's a relief. It's a relief because whenever PRIEST makes an album, like any band, you put your heart and soul into it; it is that typical 'blood, sweat and tears.' It's not an easy thing to do 40 years later. But PRIEST has always been up for the challenge of that, and it's one of things that we love to do more than anything else as we move on through our metal years. So this is a great time for PRIEST: 40th anniversary, a brand new record. Life couldn't be better."

In a 2013 interview with Billboard.com, Halford described the new PRIEST CD's sound as "hard. It's heavy. It's something we think our PRIEST fans will be thrilled with. We know we have a reputation to maintain, and we know we have to deliver something really strong and solid. The album is going to be full of all the great things you love about JUDAS PRIEST — I don't think I can say anything more than that without being hung, drawn and quartered."

Speaking to VH1 Radio Network's Dave Basner, Halford said about what fans can expect from JUDAS PRIEST's next LP: "We felt it was very important to follow up [2008's] 'Nostradamus', the last release, and that was a concept experiment and it was a real success for us and the fans loved it, but I think our fans and ourselves as a band, we want to get back to the side of PRIEST that we haven't heard for a few years and reemphasize and remake those big, heavy metal statements again."

PRIEST's next album will mark the band's first release with Richie Faulkner, most recently guitarist in the backing band for Lauren Harris (daughter of IRON MAIDEN bassist Steve Harris). Faulkner joined PRIEST as the replacement for original PRIEST guitarist Kenneth "K.K." Downing, who announced his retirement from the band in April 2011. Asked how it has been collaborating on new music with Faulkner, Halford told Guitar World in a 2012 interview: "Really, really strong. Exciting. He's riffing and saying, 'Robby, I'm thinking of this and this and this.' It's really exciting to have that kind of energy, because you feed off of it."


Regarding whether technology has changed JUDAS PRIEST's songwriting process at all, Halford said: "It's dangerous to walk around with a flash drive on a bunch of keys. [Laughs] To a great extent, it doesn't really change. The technology is amazing in terms of the advantages it brings to music now, some of it good, some of it very bad. It's all about discipline and self-belief, determination, wanting to do the best you can do and not accepting anything that's below par. We've always had that attitude in PRIEST. We've always felt really strongly about any track that goes out for our fans. We're still doing it like we always have: firing up the riffs and finding a vocal melody to go with it, me going into me wonderful world of the Roget's Thesaurus and trying to come up with a new lyric and a new idea. And that's what we've been doing for four decades."

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